Many businesses are exploring the idea of Influencer Marketing to enhance their social media visibility. There’s nothing new about celebrity endorsements, they’ve been a fact of life in advertising for decades. The whole idea that star-power improves the credibility of your product or service is a proven technique in consumer psychology that sells everything from credit cards to coffee machines. For a long time this was the preserve of big brands with big budgets to hire movie stars, musicians and sports figures to promote their latest and greatest in TV commercials and magazine ads. Could it work for you?
Now we have YouTubers with huge followings, Instagram stars and even local personalities who can do exactly the same thing. And the cost of using an Influencer is not the big ticket price you’d pay for Hollywood glamour. So, given that its more accessible and can be a technique for small-medium businesses, should you consider it, and how should you use it?
Influencer Marketing is a way to fast track credibility of your brand. The trusted feeling consumers have with an celebrity transfers directly to you and your business, so it gets you over one of the biggest hurdles small-medium businesses have attracting new customers. People prefer to do business with those they know and like. If they like an Influencer who likes you, by corollary, they’ll like you too. And the large following of an Influencer puts you in front of many more eyeballs than you could attain with organic marketing
To really give maximum impact of having an influencer connected to your brand, you should be thinking video. For their fans and followers to see and hear them interacting with your product(s) or service(s) not only demonstrates how they work, but gives them the opportunity to promote it much more forcefully than a series of images. Certainly take stills during a video shoot and get photos at the same time but you’re doubling up on the experience and getting more value from the influencer.
Not all brands, products or services are appropriate for this type of marketing, but if it is right for you, here are some considerations to maximise the benefits.
- Match the Influencer and their audience with your target market. It shouldn’t be a big leap to connect the Influencer and your business. A big travel blogger and your resort, or a local sports personality and your personal wellness spa are reasonable. A teenage YouTuber promoting life coaching for Over-40s could be a stretch.
- The personality of the Influencer need to reflect the personality of your brand. What they represent should be close to your brand values. Likewise the Influencer wants to stay aligned to brands that resonate with them. They’ve built a following around specific values and want to maintain that. This is particularly relevant around animals, the environment and gender equality.
- Look at using a big fish in a small pond if you want to reach an audience where you live. Often it’s much cheaper and much easier to get in touch with an Influencer in your own backyard, The association can be quite beneficial as they can return again and again to participate in campaigns and give your customers the possibility of live face-to-face encounters.
- Influencer Marketing is an investment like any other promotional activity. Aside from any fees or ‘considerations’ such as merchandise or services provided, you’ll then budget producing the content to exploit the relationship. Think photo shoots, commercials, a video interview or giving endorsements; your marketing has to be visually driven to reinforce the association.
If Influencer Marketing is a promotion tactic you’d like to pursue, consider hiring a professional video company for any video work than trying to do this yourself. They can maximise the limited time you’ll have with your celebrity to shoot anything such as interviews, commercials or endorsements. Rarely do you get a second shoot day to fix any mistakes.